Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail: Setting yourself up for success on those cold, dark winter mornings

TDB Fitness Newsletter 11/7/2021

Getting up in the morning is much more difficult during the winter. Cold temperatures and fewer hours of daylight make getting out of a warm, comfortable bed especially painful. See this week’s trainer’s tips for advice on how to streamline your mornings for success this winter!

Photo by Magda Ehlers from Pexels

Tip of the week:

Plan ahead for the mornings

As we’ve mentioned in this newsletter before, the way to prepare for success is to make sure you prepare at all. As humans, we rely on habits to successfully manage our days. Once we’re able to turn specific behaviors into habits, our brains have to dedicate less energy towards them. This frees up brain space and energy for engaging in work and leisure that we feel is more worthwhile.

However, when our environment changes, our habits need to change along with it or we can no longer be successful. During winter, everything changes. We can’t expect our habits that made us successful during summertime to continue to do so. When considering how to set yourself up for success on cold, dark winter mornings, remember the following:

  • Be honest with yourself. Commit to a sleep schedule and plan your morning based on your sleep and energy needs in the wintertime. The hours of daylight we get in the winter shrinks, and with it our energy and desire to be active. I also live in state where, between at least December and February, my car is likely to be encased in ice when I wake up in the morning (I also have historically forgotten that fact when leaving myself enough time to get ready in the morning). Nothing adds to morning stress like trying to drive to work when you’re already running late, and you only have a 10 inch wide gap to see through your windshield. Be smarter than me. However, needing more time in the morning should not mean getting less sleep. Be honest with yourself and go to sleep earlier.
  • Plan ahead. Make yourself breakfast the night before (see the recipe below for an example). Lay out your clothes for the morning. Set your coffee pot before you go to bed. By taking these simple steps ahead of time, you have fewer things to expend energy on in the morning.
  • Give yourself grace. We mention this a lot in our newsletter. We can negatively impact our own mental health by holding ourselves to higher standards than are realistic for our needs. Humans, along with many other animals, have less energy in the winter. That’s ok. Listen to your body first, and plan your day according to your needs. Winter is hard for meany people, but if we commit to taking care of ourselves now, I know we can make it through!

Food For Thought

Overnight Oats Recipe

Overnight Oats is an old standby Vinnie and I revert back to whenever we need to have an efficient morning. They’re easy to make, ready to eat when you wake up, hearty and healthy, and you can make them to taste. See the recipe below and video above for how Vinnie makes our Overnight Oats!

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups almond or oat milk
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp syrup
  • 1/4 cup pecans

Add 1/2 cup oats to each of four 8 oz mason jars and set aside

In a bowl, combine almond milk, pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice, vanilla, and syrup. Whisk until combined.

Add a little over 1/2 cup of the whisked ingredients to the mason jars with the oats.

Close the mason jars and shake the mixture well. Place in fridge for at least 2 hours (or over night). Eat cold.

Team Announcements

Virtual Workouts Canceled

The holidays are coming, and we will use our newsletter to keep you updated about workout scheduling during this time. We’ve decided to cancel our regular virtual workouts on Thanksgiving, Thursday 11/25/21 and Friday 11/26/21 in honor of the holiday. Our regularly scheduled programming will return Saturday 11/27/21!

Got Tea?

Renea’s a really good person to talk to — it’s part of what made her an effective middle school teacher. She’s good at listening, asking pointed questions, and giving gentle feedback.

Have something you need to get off your chest? You now have the opportunity to Spill the Tea With Renea… We’re in the process of designing an official members only space of our website to facilitate processes like these. Until then, DM her on Facebook if you ever want to chat!

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